The Lawfare Podcast: How the Police Contributed to the January 6th Insurrection

By Alan Z. Rozenshtein
Tuesday, July 5, 2022, 12:00 PM

Many individual police officers acted heroically on January 6th. But the successful attack on the Capitol by a pro-Trump mob, seeking to disrupt the certification of the electoral votes, remains one of the biggest policing failures in American history. Not only did the Capitol police fail to prepare for the attack, but many members of the mob were themselves police officers from around the country.

To talk through the many reasons behind this failure, Alan Z. Rozenshtein sat down with Vida Johnson, an associate professor of law at Georgetown Law School and the author of a recent Brooklyn Law Review article and companion Lawfare post, exploring the tactical and structural policing failures that contributed to January 6th.

Alan spoke with her about what the police should have done differently, and the role that race and politics play in how police react to domestic extremism. 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Vida's Brooklyn Law Review article - https://brooklynworks.brooklaw.edu/blr/vol87/iss2/3/

Vida's Lawfare article - https://www.lawfareblog.com/policing-and-siege-united-states-capitol